The Foreign Service Journal - July/August 2014 - page 45

AFSA NEWS
THE OFFICIAL RECORD OF THE AMERICAN FOREIGN SERVICE ASSOCIATION
AFSA Hosts Gala Dinner Celebration
Continued on page 54
THE FOREIGN SERVICE JOURNAL
|
JULY-AUGUST 2014
45
90TH ANN I VERSARY OF THE FORE I GN SERV I CE
On May 22, AFSA hosted a
dinner celebrating 90 years
of the U.S. Foreign Service
and AFSA in the Benjamin
Franklin State Dining Room
at the Department of State.
With NBC News Chief
Foreign Affairs Correspon-
dent Andrea Mitchell serving
as the master of ceremo-
nies, the evening’s speakers
included Secretary of State
John Kerry, former Senator
Richard Lugar, Representa-
tive Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.)
and former Secretary of State
Colin Powell.
Among the 215
attendees were many
current and retired
members of the For-
eign Service; Deputy
Secretaries of State
William Burns and
Heather Higginbot-
tom, and other senior
officials of the State
Department, U.S.
Agency for Interna-
tional Development,
Foreign Commercial
Service and Foreign
Agricultural Service.
The families of
Anne Smedinghoff
and Antoinette Toma-
sek, two AFSAmem-
bers who recently
died while on duty overseas,
were in attendance.
The youngest (Stephanie
Parenti) and oldest members
of the Foreign Service (Joan
Clark, Bruce Laingen and Al
Lukens, each more senior
than the Foreign Service
itself) were also present.
Owing to ticket sales, the
dinner event broke even in
terms of budget cost to AFSA.
As guests mingled prior
to being seated for dinner,
Virginia State Assembly
Delegate Alfonso Lopez (49th
District) paid tribute to AFSA
and the Foreign Service. He
presented a framed copy of
House Joint Resolution 406
passed by the State Assembly
to AFSA officials, which com-
mends AFSA and honors the
Foreign Service on its 90th
anniversary.
Opening the dinner pro-
gram, AFSA President Robert
J. Silverman welcomed the
guests. “Ninety years makes
us a young profession that
has much to be proud of, and
can build on its successes as
we continue to expand and
redefine ourselves,” stated
Silverman. He dedicated the
evening to celebrating the
Foreign Service’s past—and,
more importantly, to recom-
mitting to ensure a profes-
sional, diverse and effec-
tive diplomatic service for
America’s future.
Secretary Kerry spoke of an
evolving Foreign Service that
Former Senator Richard Lugar addresses guests at the gala dinner
celebrating the 90th anniversary of the U.S. Foreign Service. In the
audience, from left, Ambassador John Negroponte, Mary Beth Smedinghoff,
former Secretary of State Colin Powell and Secretary of State John F. Kerry.
JOAQUINSOSA/AFSA
Gala attendees included Paula Jakub (left),
chief executive officer of the American
Foreign Service Protective Association,
and Joan Clark, a retired FSO. A former
ambassador and winner of AFSA’s 2007
Lifetime Contributions to American
Diplomacy Award, Ms. Clark is one of the
oldest members of the Foreign Service.
JOAQUINSOSA/AFSA
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